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Crunchy California Roll Rice Cakes With Spicy Citrus Aioli

Submitted by: | Source: Original recipe

Crunchy California Roll Rice Cakes with Spicy Citrus Aioli
2013-02-15 Other
5 1

Most of the steps to this version of the popular California Roll Sushi can be done up to 72 hours in advance, making it a great party recipe.

  • Prep Time: 1 hour plus 4 hours up to overnight chilling time
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 hours 15 minutes (includes chilling time)


1½ cups Short-grain Sushi Rice
1½ Tbsp Unseasoned Rice Wine Vinegar
2 Tbsp Mirin
3 tsp Kosher Salt
2 Tbsp Minced Pickled Ginger
3 cups Water
1 Hass Avocado, pitted, peeled and diced
2 Tbsp Mixed White & Black Sesame Seeds
1½ cups Fresh Lump Crab Meat, coarsely chopped
¼ cup Freshly-squeezed Orange Juice
2 Tbsp Freshly-squeezed Lime Juice
2 tsp Low-sodium Soy Sauce
1 Tbsp Adobo Sauce From a Can of Chipotle In Adobo
1 cup Light Mayonnaise
2 cloves Garlic, peeled and chopped
¼ cup Chopped Fresh Cilantro
1 Scallion, ends trimmed and thinly-sliced
3 cups Canola Oil, for frying
1½ cups Rice Flour


In a large pot that has a lid, stir together the sushi rice, rice wine vinegar, mirin, Kosher salt, minced pickled ginger, and 3 cups of water; bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat. Once the mixture comes to a boil, reduce the heat to a low simmer, cover the pot with a kitchen towel or cloth, place the lid on the pot and cook for an additional 17 to 20 minutes, or until the rice has completely absorbed all the liquid. Remove the pot from the heat, remove the lid and the kitchen towel and let the rice rest for 15 minutes to slightly cool.

While the rice is cooling, line an 8x8-inch baking dish with plastic wrap.

Add the diced Hass avocado, the mixed white and black sesame seeds and the lump crab meat to the sushi rice and fold into the rice until uniformly mixed. Transfer the sushi rice mixture to your prepared baking dish and press the rice firmly into the pan. Cover the top of the pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 4 hours, or up to overnight.

To prepare the Spicy Citrus Aioli, add the orange juice, lime juice, soy sauce, adobo sauce, light mayonnaise, garlic, and cilantro to the bowl of a food processor fitted with a standard processing blade and process the mixture until smooth, about 30 seconds, using a flexible spatula to scrape the sides of the bowl as needed. Transfer the mixture to a small serving bowl, stir in the thinly-sliced scallion, cover with plastic wrap and chill until ready to serve.

In a medium-sized deep skillet over medium-high heat, heat the canola oil until shimmering.

While the oil heating, retrieve the baking dish containing the pressed rice mixture. Remove the top plastic wrap and lift the square of rice from the pan using the plastic wrap lining and transfer to a cutting board. Discard the plastic wrap and, using a large knife that has been dipped in hot water to prevent sticking, cut the rice cake in half. Re-moisten the knife with hot water and cut each half into 6 equal-sized rectangles, for a total of 12 rice cakes.

Place the rice flour in a medium-sized bowl and dredge each rice cake in the rice flour, making sure that all sides have been coated.

Working in small batches, fry the rice cakes, turning once, until golden brown, about 5 minutes total. Using a slotted spatula, transfer the Crunchy California Roll Rice Cakes to a paper towel-lined baking sheet to drain.

To serve, place the bowl of Spicy Citrus Aioli in the middle of a large serving bowl and arrange the Crunchy Rice Cakes around the aioli. Alternatively, select 6 small plates and plate 2 Crunchy California Roll Rice Cakes on plate, topped with the Spicy Citrus Aioli. Serve immediately and enjoy! Serves 6 as an appetizer.

Helpful Tips:

This recipe combines the ever-popular flavors of a California roll with a crunchy, hot rice cake to dip into or drape in a luxurious, citrusy spicy aioli. Using beautiful fresh avocado and real crab elevates the flavors of the tried and true original, and frying the rice cakes adds a new texture and taste sensation. This dish can be made up to 72 hours in advance, just leaving the last-minute frying to do before serving this crowd-pleasing dish. Enjoy!